By Makeida Antonio
The ruling Antigua Barbuda Labour Party (ABLP) has suggested that the country’s main opposition, the United Progressive Party (UPP), is “too jumpy” as the country’s political atmosphere intensifies.
On Wednesday, the UPP hosted a campaign pre-launch which revealed plans for the next general elections, constitutionally due in 2023, as well as making its new website public.
Last night, the party’s official campaign launch took place during a drive-in rally at the Potters playing field where the official presentation of its 16 candidates was the main feature.
Cabinet spokesperson Melford Nicholas was asked at a media briefing when the general election might be called.
In response, he claimed the UPP appeared to be on edge since the ABLP is confident in retaining its majority in Parliament.
“I think the opposition party has become a bit jumpy because they’ve realised, if it’s one thing that they know, that the government has a stellar record of responding and providing responses to the development challenges that they are faced with,” Nicholas said during yesterday’s post-Cabinet press conference.
The Information Minister defended his government’s communication methods and said it had no need to boast about its track record.
“When the elections are called, I can assure you that the government will be muscular — a term I like to use — in our response and the contrast between us and them will be made clear for the public and we are not going to be bashful about our achievements,” he indicated.
Nicholas believes that the government’s accomplishments speak for themselves.
“All I can say is to the people of Antigua and Barbuda, if it is one thing that we do, we communicate often, we communicate clearly through these programmes and other forums that we use. When the elections are called, we are certainly going to be able to post our accomplishments and our achievements in terms of our call for another successful term to come,” he added.
While no election date has yet been given, Prime Minister Gaston Browne has previously hinted it could be held earlier than next year.